Describing McCain

Key word descriptions of John McCain's debate demeanor from Patrick Healy at the New York Times:

tetchy ... increasingly inconsistent and testy ... churlish ... tactics and tone appeared not to help him ... voice turned edgy at times ... frozen smile and wide eyes — which blinked frequently and distractingly at times — seemed a little strange ... [quoting Robert Shrum] "confused, ineffective, at times stumbling"

From Mary McNamara at the Los Angeles Times:

at times could not contain himself, muttering and issuing small grunts ... eye-widening and explosive snorts ... simply rude

From a San Francisco Chronicle editorial:

[more ...]

awkward moments ... uncomfortable and even agitated ...

Two full sentences from Joe Garofoli for the Chronicle: [more ...]

McCain didn't look presidential on the split screen when he rolled and bugged out his eyes in mock surprise while Obama was talking. The best was the look on McCain's face when Obama threw a sideways compliment at Fox News.

For substance, Eugene Robinson:

Voters heard Democratic Party ideas juxtaposed against Republican Party ideas. That, more than grouchiness or demeanor, is what worked against John McCain and led respondents in the network instant polls to overwhelmingly favor Obama.
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    Honestly, this seems like an attempt (5.00 / 2) (#2)
    by ruffian on Thu Oct 16, 2008 at 06:07:42 AM EST
    on the left's side to recreate the manufactured hubbub over Gore's sighs in 2000. I watched the whole thing on the split screen this time and did not find this to be a big deal. Obama was not exactly a statue either.

    I think Eugene Robinson got it right (none / 0) (#3)
    by ruffian on Thu Oct 16, 2008 at 06:09:10 AM EST
    And I rarely say that.

    He was talking about (none / 0) (#4)
    by Fabian on Thu Oct 16, 2008 at 07:24:25 AM EST
    McCain's policies - not his "grunts".

    Thank goodness.  I really do NOT care about a leader's mannerisms more than their policies and vision for the future.  (And that goes for the both of them.)


    But when both of their policies and visions... (none / 0) (#7)
    by kdog on Thu Oct 16, 2008 at 08:56:23 AM EST
    fail to inspire any hope whatsoever, all you are left with is the superficial.

    I'd rather look and listen to Obama for 4 years...McCain would be nearly as unbearable as Bush has been.


    That's a sad statement. (none / 0) (#8)
    by Fabian on Thu Oct 16, 2008 at 09:26:58 AM EST
    Look at it this way, either one is better than the totally lame (duck) GWBush.

    Yep, he's a jerk... (none / 0) (#1)
    by TomStewart on Thu Oct 16, 2008 at 02:23:22 AM EST
    a real knee-biter.

    Always good to start a new day with Douglas Addams.

    he looked to me.... (none / 0) (#5)
    by rise hillary rise on Thu Oct 16, 2008 at 08:05:53 AM EST
    like he had been freshly Botoxed. and Provigil'ed too.

    It is always (none / 0) (#6)
    by Wile ECoyote on Thu Oct 16, 2008 at 08:13:51 AM EST
    about style over substance here.

    Not always. (none / 0) (#9)
    by Fabian on Thu Oct 16, 2008 at 09:29:25 AM EST
    But I am disappointed that in the face of a global economic crisis, we are talking about "grunts" not badly needed vision and policy.

    Absolutely (5.00 / 2) (#11)
    by ruffian on Thu Oct 16, 2008 at 09:55:22 AM EST
    It is just as ridiculous for us to make a point of McCains grunts as it was for the MSM to make one of Gore's sighs. People say "it matters", but it only matters because people keep saying it matters.

    I'm filing it in my ever-growing "We have become what we despise" file.


    I think that for (none / 0) (#13)
    by eric on Thu Oct 16, 2008 at 10:05:41 AM EST
    many of us, it isn't that any of it really matters all that much.

    But your point is well taken.  This is really superficial.  Still, what I was noticing was stuff that I was thinking would matter to other people.  I have already made up my mind so it is neither here nor there.  But when I see what I saw last night, I am thinking, how are other people perceiving this?  In my view, and I realize people can disagree about it, is that it wasn't a particularly professional or impressive showing in the appearance category.

    With that being said, I certainly think that we are all entitled to our opinions about it and respect yours.

    Finally, it does occur to me that my wife and my perceptions are certainly colored by the fact that we are hyper conscious of appearance when making arguments because of our experience in court.  


    There is more to it then (none / 0) (#10)
    by eric on Thu Oct 16, 2008 at 09:53:48 AM EST
    just criticizing the mannerisms.  McCain could not contain himself.  His reactions were very distracting and amateurish.  Now, it may not be a big deal to a lot of people, but when my wife and I were watching, we were thinking of how one would look if you were in court reacting to your opponents arguments like he was.

    It is tough at times to contain oneself, but it is the appropriate thing to do.  A smile, a small raise of the eyebrow, a subtle shake of the head.  Those are fine.  But the reactions that McCain was having were way over the top.

    Regarding mannerisms and demeanor.... (5.00 / 2) (#14)
    by kdog on Thu Oct 16, 2008 at 10:09:22 AM EST
    I think it does matter in regards to diplomacy...the president is the face of America, I'm not thrilled with a squirrely, chortling, creepy looking dude speaking to other world leaders on our behalf.

    You do realize that if the MCMers were supporting (5.00 / 1) (#15)
    by jawbone on Thu Oct 16, 2008 at 12:35:49 PM EST
    McCain, his mannerisms would be charming and revealing a man who was able to feel and express emotion? Someone in touch with his real self. Or some such more laudatory descrition?

    When the MCMers* begin to concentrate on little mannerisms or physical traits, as well as treating things said in jest as actual policy statements, we're in MCM attack mode. As was done to Gore, Kerry, Hillary, Edwards, many Dems. When the MCMers take up the wording one candidate uses about his opponent, such as "errratic," you can rest assured the MCM has chosen sides. Remember how easily the MCM took up the Repub/Rove talking points about various Dems?

    We really are in becoming the thing we hate mode.

    The MCM decided fairly early on that Obama would be our next president. It may even be that by now the Repubs want him as the president presiding over the Big Me$$--which is going to take quite awhile to unwind, imho.

    Bernhard at Moon of Alabama notes that the hedge fund collapse is now gaining steam and will adversely affect the stock market for a considerable time. As people demand their money from the hedge funds, they have to sell their assets (stocks) into a declining market, thus adding to the downward pressure. The following quotes are form an article linked to at the site:

    A fundraiser for a major hedge fund said the period "between now and December 1 is a sort of death march" for the industry.

    The chief executive of a leading alternative investment manager said he expected the hedge fund industry to shrink by 50 per cent in coming months - with half the decline coming from withdrawals and half coming from investment losses.
    The industry, which manages close to $2,000bn, has experienced outflows during only a handful of months previously, including a small outflow in April of this year.

    Two $Trillion down to at least 1$T. Oooof.

    Bernhard does not see any real need for hedge funds in well-run economy. If people want to gamble that way, make it a no recourse situation. Just like a casino....

    Check out his ideas.

    I wonder how the Chicago school economists are viewing this Big Me$$...Goolsbee, for example. Other econ advisers to Obama.... What will he do? Doesn't sound like investigations are all that likely, but I will be glad to be disabused of that notion.

    This is not going to be pretty. And since Obama worked so closely with Harry and Nancy and Barney and Hanky Panky, we Dems now own the Paulson Fix Is In. Obama didn't get us in this mess, but he will own it come election day. As will the party.

    Trouble, right here in River City.

    *MCMers--Members of the Mainstream Corporate Media (MCM)


    Sorry, they just weren't (none / 0) (#12)
    by ruffian on Thu Oct 16, 2008 at 09:56:46 AM EST
    Just my opinion, I realize.